New York Yankees

New York Yankees

New York Yankees

New York Yankees Logo

AAA: Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees International League, AA:Trenton Thunder Eastern League, Advanced A: Tampa Bay
Retired Numbers:
1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 23, 32, 37, 42, 44, 49
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Dominant is the word that best describes the performance of the New York Yankees in 1927.  Still seething after their defeat at the hands of the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1926 World Series, the Yankees took out their anger on the rest of the baseball world by compiling a regular-season record of 110-44, en route to capturing the American League pennant.  The Philadelphia Athletics finished a distant second, 19 games back.  The Yankees so overwhelmed their opposition that they posted a run-differential of almost 400 runs over the course of the season.  In addition to breaking their own league record by scoring 975 runs, they permitted the opposition to score a total of only 599 times, compiling in the process a team ERA of 3.20.  The Chicago White Sox finished second in the circuit with a mark of 3.91.

Waite Hoyt headed New York’s pitching staff, leading all A.L. hurlers with a record of 22-7, while also compiling a 2.63 ERA and 23 complete games.  Herb Pennock finished 19-8, with a 3.00 ERA and 18 complete games.  Urban Shocker had his second straight outstanding year for the team, going 18-6 with a 2.84 ERA.  The Yankees also found a way to work some new blood into their starting rotation.  Left-hander Dutch Ruether, acquired from the Washington Senators late the previous year, posted 13 victories for the club, while 27-year-old rookie right-hander George Pipgras added another 10 wins.  New York even had the league’s best relief pitcher.  Making his major-league debut at the age of 30, Wilcy Moore finished the campaign with a record of 19-7, along with a league-leading 2.28 ERA and 13 saves.

It was the Yankee offense, though, that enabled the team to reach legendary status.  Nicknamed Murderer’s Row for the manner in which it devastated opposing pitchers, New York’s lineup compiled a league-leading .307 batting average, .383 on-base percentage, and .489 slugging percentage (still the major league record).  New York’s 158 home runs as a team nearly tripled the output of the league runner-up in that category (Philadelphia finished second with 56 homers).  Yankee players finished first, second, and third in the league in home runs, runs scored, and total bases, while also holding onto the top two spots in runs batted in, hits, triples, walks, and slugging percentage.  Bob Meusel batted .337, knocked in 103 runs, amassed 47 doubles, and finished second in the league with 24 stolen bases.  Earle Combs batted .356, placed third in the league with 137 runs scored, and topped the circuit with 231 hits and 23 triples.  Tony Lazzeri followed up his outstanding rookie season by finishing third in the league with 18 home runs, while also driving in 102 runs, batting .309, and stealing 22 bases.

Yet, it was the combination of Ruth and Gehrig that truly made the Yankee lineup Murderer’s Row.  The two men finished first and second in the American League in six different offensive categories.  Aside from establishing a new single-season home run record by hitting 60 homers, Ruth knocked in 164 runs, scored a league-leading 158 times, batted .356, accumulated 417 total bases, and topped the circuit with 138 walks, a .487 on-base percentage, and a .772 slugging percentage.  Meanwhile, Gehrig finished second in the league with 47 homers, 149 runs scored, a .373 batting average, 218 hits, 18 triples, 109 walks, and a .765 slugging percentage.  He also topped the circuit with 175 runs batted in, 52 doubles, and 447 total bases, en route to earning A.L. MVP honors.

The Yankees continued their dominance in the World Series, disposing of the overmatched Pittsburgh Pirates in four straight games.  The Yankees outscored the Pirates by a combined margin of 23-10 during the Fall Classic, with Ruth hitting the only two home runs in the Series.  He also knocked in seven runs and batted .400.

By Bob_Cohen